Footscray has suffered a 55-point loss to Collingwood in slippery conditions at the AIA Centre on Saturday afternoon.
It was a tight contest for much of the day, with the Bulldogs finding themselves within a goal during the third quarter, but a fast-finishing Collingwood outfit kicked away to finish 13.12 (90) to 4.11 (35) winners.
A wet and low-scoring opening term set the scene for much of the game as the Dogs found themselves with forward 50 chances early but couldn’t capitalise on them to create some distance from the Pies.
Josh Chatfield delivered one of his two beautiful finishes to break the stalemate, as a late Collingwood goal gave them a narrow lead at the first change - one that the Dogs managed to keep tight for a large portion of the game.
The contest was played between the flanks during the second term as Footscray controlled possession through skipper Lachie Sullivan, winning the clearance battle despite the hit-out discrepancy.
Eight points was all that separated the sides at the main break, as conditions remained wet underfoot for the second half and ensured goals were hard to come by for both sides.
The Dogs defended valiantly to give themselves a sniff heading into the final term, but it was all Collingwood from there as they managed seven goals in the final term to run out comfortable victors.
Last year’s number two draft pick Sam Darcy delighted Footscray fans, running out for the first time in the red, white, and blue, splitting his managed time at both ends of the ground and showing a willingness to create contests both aerially and on the ground.
Sullivan led from the front with 34 disposals and eight clearances with his cleanliness below his knees a real highlight.
Hayden Crozier again showed his poise in defence with 24 disposals (21 kicks) and 13 marks, while Cody Raak (17 disposals, five marks) did his best to assist Crozier’s efforts.
Josh Schache spent a large part of the day in the ruck, and managed to get around the ground to collect 19 disposals, eight marks, and five clearances.
Ewan Macpherson (22 disposals, seven clearances) displayed his grit all game, while Dom Bedendo (18 disposals, seven marks) and Louis Butler (15 disposals) worked hard in the slog.
Footscray will look to bounce back when they host Gold Coast at VU Whitten Oval on Saturday 21 May.
Collingwood 2.2 4.4 6.8 13.12 (90)
Footscray 1.4 2.8 3.9 4.11 (35)
Goals: Chatfield 2, Schache, Hamad.